Miami Dolphins Draft 2012: 5 Reasons Miami Doesn't Draft Ryan Tannehill

Robert MaloneContributor IIIApril 10, 2012

Miami Dolphins Draft 2012: 5 Reasons Miami Doesn't Draft Ryan Tannehill

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    Yesterday, we looked at some of the reasons why the Miami Dolphins will consider David DeCastro with their first pick of the draft, and now it's time to consider why that decision, or any decision for that matter, is better than the favorite pick, Ryan Tannehill.

    Tannehill has been linked to the Dolphins' eighth overall pick for months now, and it's starting to gather support from fans.  However, the issue is still whether or not this is truly the best option for Miami.

    There is enough support to suggest that the Dolphins go in a different direction, so let's take a look at some of the reasoning behind it.

19 Starts at Quarterback

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    Tannehill, previously a wide receiver, only had 19 starts at the quarterback position.  The Dolphins need a quarterback and are considering using their eighth overall pick on a guy with less than two full years at the position.

    However, it gets worse.  

    Along with only 19 games in two years, Tannehill has only faced five teams that were ranked among the top 50 defenses in the nation in their respective years.

    In those games, Tannehill's numbers are humbled. He only completed 56% of his passes, at a lowly 5.5 yards per pass attempt, with five touchdowns and seven interceptions.

    The bulk of his good stats?

    He played seven teams that were nationally ranked 101st or worse in defense (and this doesn't include SMU).  

    Besides an already small sample size of games, the defenses he's played against are hardly competitive enough to make a determination.  

Mike Sherman

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    Mike Sherman is not the guy you want developing your young quarterback of the future.

    Let's face it.  How many Pro Bowl quarterbacks has he developed?

    Zero.

    In Green Bay, Brett Favre was already a star.  

    He only had one year with Jon Kitna in Seattle, and Kitna's career was forgettable (minus the one season in Detroit).  

    He had one year with Aaron Rodgers before being replaced by a former quarterbacks coach in Mike McCarthy (the guy that made Steve Bono a winner in Kansas City).  

    Matt Schaub proved to be a quality quarterback backing up the always-injured Michael Vick for three years, so that one year in Houston should also be disregarded.

    When it comes to quarterbacks, his greatest success in the past 13 years is Dallas's third-string quarterback Stephen McGee (Sherman coached him in college), and that's still a work in progress.

    Tannehill is going to be a project player before he can be a successful starting quarterback in the NFL.  

    This leads to one very important question.

No Official Quarterbacks Coach

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    Who on this Miami Dolphins coaching staff can develop Tannehill?

    Mike Sherman (as mentioned before) doesn't have a history for developing quarterbacks.  He hasn't worked magic anywhere in the last 13 years and, before that, he was an offensive line coach.

    Joe Philbin is another former offensive line coach who worked under a great offensive mind in Mike McCarthy.  

    The Dolphins' assistant quarterbacks coach is Zac Taylor, who's coaching in his first gig under his father-in-law Sherman and has little experience in the NFL.

    These are not the kind of dominoes you want setup before using an eighth overall pick on a wide receiver-turned-quarterback, who you know needs significant adjustments and experience of his own before he'll be a competitive NFL quarterback.  

    With so many better-prepared passers later in the draft, this just seems like a risky pick for a coaching staff not equipped to handle this kind of project at such a high cost.  

Brock Osweiler

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    Honestly, this isn't just about Osweiler.  In general, the 2012 quarterback draft pool is deep.  It may be two to three rounds deep with guys that'll play on more than just the practice squad.  Besides Osweiler, you have Russell Wilson, Brandon Weeden, and Kirk Cousins.

    Just like Tannehill, these guys have components of their game that need work (except for Wilson, who is being shunned for his height), but they're going to cost other teams significantly less for a marginal value difference.

    Since 2006, Miami has struggled with using their first-round draft picks for value.  The team has often been caught reaching back, and it's about to happen again.  

    This isn't a year when they should take extreme risks. The Dolphins should take the piece that sets the foundation.

    It feels more progressive for the offense to draft a primary receiver in Michael Floyd or a solid offensive lineman and follow it up with a project quarterback than to draft a project quarterback first and then scramble to put pieces around him.

Big 12 Quarterbacks

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    The past ten years have been brutal to Big 12 quarterbacks.  In college, some of these guys like Vince Young, Sam Bradford, Colt McCoy, Chris Simms, and even Brad Smith were must-watch names.  Unfortunately, that awe and success in college has yet to translate for any of these players at the NFL level. 

    Does this mean a Big 12 quarterback can't be successful?  Of course not.

    However, what it does mean is that Tannehill is a questionable take for Miami in the first round.

    Honestly, Tannehill only became a first-round quarterback after the Dolphins were spurned by every quarterback they wanted in free agency.  If they had agreed to terms with any one of them, Tannehill would easily be a second-round draft pick.  It was Miami's need that pushed Tannehill way up into the first round and not his resume.

    That's the issue.

    When you break down the stats of the decade's Big 12 quarterbacks taken outside the first round, the numbers get ugly.  Of those guys that still play in the league today (five guys not including Brad Smith), they only have 19 career wins in 55 starts.  

    If a Big 12 quarterback isn't risky enough, the ones outside the first round are.